On Tuesday, March 16, 2021, a horrific act of violence targeted the Asian/Asian American & Pacific Islander (AAPI) community, specifically Asian women in Atlanta, Georgia. This assault on the AAPI community is rooted in white supremacy, misogyny, white-male dominance, and intense anti-Asian bigotry. Moreover, the recent verbal and physical attacks on AAPI communities are not isolated incidents, but part of a larger history of racialized violence against Asians stemming back to the 19th century in the United States. In the present day, vile, senseless, and inhumane acts of terror are being fueled and encouraged by extreme right wing politicians and key leaders and are stridently repeated and perpetuated by powerful media figures under the guise of 1st Amendment freedoms. This most recently includes ignorant, misogynistic, and supremacist beliefs that attempt to blame people of Asian descent for the COVID-19 pandemic.
The MultiCultural Center at UC Santa Barbara stands steadfastly in solidarity with our AAPI- identified community members here and throughout the world. We condemn these horrific, cowardly, and devastating attacks and the racist, sexist rhetoric that fuels them. We share their heartache and offer our prayers and unyielding support for the AAPI community and all those impacted by such appalling violence. Although there are some who attempt to dismiss these acts of racial and gendered violence, we affirm the long and hard-fought understanding that this is about race, misogyny, and hatred. The intersectionality of oppressions are a reality as witnessed in this incident of violence against women, anti-Asian hatred, and the use of religious extremism as a means to castigate and dehumanize members of the human family.
The MultiCultural Center reaffirms our long standing commitment to combating these and all systems of oppression within ourselves, in our communities, our nation, and our world. This is the foundational mission of the MultiCultural Center, our home of over thirty years of collectivism, interconnectedness, hope, and healing. We recognize that racism, sexism, and other forms of violence and oppression against the Queer & Trans, Black, Indigenous and other People of Color (QTBIPOC) community, the impoverished, the houseless, those with disabilities, and other marginalized communities are woven into the very fabric of this society. As such, we resolutely and unflinchingly stand in solidarity with our diverse community of social justice change agents.
The MultiCultural Center will continue to play a pivotal role in providing a safe space for our community while being a vanguard for equity, transformation, and liberation. Together we will work to bring about peace, reconciliation, and true equality as we help forge a world where historically and currently marginalized individuals throughout all communities no longer live in fear.
(Please see also the message from the UCSB Campus Community Council in support of our AAPI community - https://t.e2ma.net/webview/oe589f/ffb62d98757c7de26353a98bc098622f)